TROY, NY – The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) baseball won a pair of tightly contested non-league games over Bates College by scores of 6-2 and 9-6, on Sunday afternoon at Robison Field at Karl Steffen Ballpark. With the doubleheader sweep, the Engineers improve to 3-1 on the year, while the Bobcats drop to 2-4.
In the opener, graduate student Chris Grome allowed just one run on four hits over 6.0 innings to pick up his first win of the season. He struck out a career-high 11 batters, while walking two, before classmate Thomas Neuman worked the seventh to secure the victory.
Offensively, the Engineers answered a Bates run in the top of the second with one of their own in the bottom of the third. Senior George Rainer plated Joey Saia with an infield groundout, tying the game at 1-1.
Jack Moncur then delivered a two-run double in the fourth to give the hosts a 3-1 advantage, before Jake Defayette cranked the first of his two home runs on the day to give RPI a 4-1 lead in the fifth. Later that inning, Martin Marinchev drove in the Engineers’ fifth run with a groundout, before Moncur capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly to right.
The Bobcats plated one unearned run in the seventh off of Neuman, before catcher Freddy Reichelt threw out a potential base-stealer to end the game.
In the nightcap, RPI jumped out to an early 5-0 lead in the bottom of the first, highlighted by a lead-off homer from Defayette – his third of the season – and a two-run shot from Dylan Albert†
Bates started to creep back into the game with single runs in the fifth and sixth, but the Engineers had an answer each time.
A three-run top of the eighth brought the Bobcats to within one (7-6), and nearly tied the game, if not for Aidan Hicks throwing out a runner at the plate to end the inning.
RPI added two insurance runs in the bottom of the inning, thanks to a Bates error and a single to center from Hicks that plated Hudson Livesey for a 9-6 lead.
Cameron Heuer worked a scoreless ninth to earn his first collegiate save, striking out one and walking one. Ben Koomey (1-0) earned the victory for the Engineers, allowing two runs on seven hits over 5.0 innings. He struck out six and walked two.
The Engineers are back in action on Wednesday, when they host Western New England College (3pm). Bates travels to Endicott College on Wednesday (3:30pm).